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Pineapple Factory Suspends Operations One Year After Commissioning

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Nathan Mutungi, the Chairperson Nyakihanga Fruits and Vegetable Growers Cooperative Society, says they decided to suspend the operations of the factory due to numerous challenges that require government intervention.
The Closed Pineapple Factory in Ntungamo (Photo Edson Kinene)

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A pineapple processing factory in Ntungamo district has halted its operation, just a year after it was commissioned.

The Shillings 1.4 billion fruits factory belonging to Nyakihanga Fruits and Vegetable Grower’s Cooperative Society suspended its operation at the beginning of February 2021.

Nathan Mutungi, the Chairperson Nyakihanga Fruits and Vegetable Growers Cooperative Society, says they decided to suspend the operations of the factory due to numerous challenges that require government intervention. 

According to Mutungi, the mechanical part of the factory is incomplete adding that they also need filling and packing machines. Apparently, they have been packing the juice manually, which comprised its quality and was time-consuming.

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He says that they also face a challenge of human since they don’t have qualified staff to operate the squeezer and boilers in the factory.

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Mutungi says that the factory also lacks vehicles to transport the 300 litres of the juice they produce, saying they currently use bicycles or hire vehicles that are costly.

According to Mutungi, because of the numerous challenges they only operate once or twice a month yet they are expected to operate daily.

Agnes Kyomukama, a pineapple farmer says their hopes to benefit from the factory have faded since has never collected a single pineapple from the farmers.

“We expected quick market for our pineapples when the factory was opened but I have never supplied any pineapple to that factory I even don’t know whether it is working,” she said.  

However, Mutungi says that owing to the lack of machines they have only decided to take in pineapples from their executive members who appreciate the challenges including late payments.

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Although the factory has suspended its operation, Denis Muhumuza, Itojo Sub County LC V Councillor, says the district council has approved the supply of two million pineapple suckers to farmers to boost the supply of the raw material to the plant.


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Apparently, farmers are selling off their pineapples at a giveaway price following a bumper harvest.

At Nyaruteme market the largest pineapple market along the Ntungamo-Mbarara road five medium pineapples cost Shillings 2000 while the large ones go for between Shillings 700 and 1000.  

About the Fruit Factory 

It was constructed with support from Uganda Industrial Research Institute at Buhanama parish, Nyamukana town council in Ntungamo district.

Commissioned by the first lady, Janet Museveni in January 2020, the factory was expected to serve farmers from Rwampara, Sheema and Ntungamo districts specifically in the areas of Itojo, Buhanama, Kayonza and Rukoni sub-counties.